Preventing Ransomware: 7 Things You Need to Know

Ransomware is harmful to any user and could have disastrous ramifications. Businesses of any size need to be aware of ransomware's effects and how the negative impact of this malware could be severe and long-lasting. Taking a proactive approach to prevent ransomware from infiltrating your system can go a long way in protecting sensitive or proprietary data.

Though dealing with ransomware can be troubling and frustrating, there are ways to ensure your system is shielded from attacks. Let's take a look at seven ways you can keep ransomware at bay and safeguard your information.

Do Not Open Untrusted Email Attachments

Hackers often use email to infiltrate users' systems. Ransomware can hide within email attachments and attack the system once the user has opened the attachment. In order to prevent this from happening, only open attachments from users you trust. If the attachment seems suspicious, contact the sender before opening it to confirm its legitimacy.

Click Only on Trusted Links

Like email, web links are used to hide malicious software. If you receive a link in a spam email, it is wise not to click that link and delete the email. Clicking on an unverified or suspicious link can create a pathway for malware to make its way into your system. Downloads may automatically begin after clicking on such links, leading to your data being encrypted or your operating system being locked.

Download Only from Trusted Sites

If you download software or media files from unknown or untrusted websites, you run the risk of infecting your computer with ransomware. You can tell a site is secure if the site URL begins with "https" rather than "http." A secure site may also have a lock or shield in the address bar.

Avoid Giving Out Personal Data

Cybercriminals may try to extract your personal data in an effort to execute their ransomware attack. Do not provide your personal information to any unknown or untrusted source. Hackers may impersonate legitimate companies, so contact the company independently to confirm the request.

Use Only Trusted USBs

USBs make it easy and convenient to transfer data. However, make sure you know where the USB is from before using it. Cybercriminals have been known to load USB devices with ransomware and leave them in public places with the hope that someone will use it and unknowingly infect their system.

Keep Up on Your Updates

Software and operating system updates are effective in protecting you from malware. These updates include the latest security patches and make your system less vulnerable to cybercriminals.

Use Email Filtering

Harmful email threats, like those containing infected attachments, are becoming more prevalent as more communication is done electronically. Customized email filtering solutions reduce the likelihood of ransomware or other nefarious malware reaching your inbox and wreaking havoc on your system.

Staying vigilant against ransomware requires knowledge and awareness. Be smart and use common sense when online. Now more than ever companies need to keep cybersecurity top of mind. A managed services provider will provide you with the tools your business needs to stay ahead of ransomware risks. Learn more about AJTC's capabilities by contacting us here or calling 708.942.8200.

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